Aronian, Giri, Rapport Winners in Tata Steel Masters Round 2

  • PeterDoggers
  • on 12/1/14 10:58.

Levon Aronian defeated one of his main rivals, Fabiano Caruana, in the second rond of the 76th Tata Steel tournament in Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands. In a game not without mistakes, the Armenian's a-pawn became a decisive factor. Boris Gelfand started with 0.0/2 as he lost to Richard Rapport, who played the Budapest Gambit. The third winner was Anish Giri, who won a sharp game against Arkadij Naiditsch.

Let's start with the big game of this round, between the world's number 2 and 6 Levon Aronian and Fabiano Caruana. In what looked like an Anti-Grünfeld, White got a slight edge and Black decided to sacrifice a pawn in order to be able to finish his development. Somehow Aronian managed to keep his extra pawn, and this became a dangerous runner on the a-file that eventually decided the game.

You can watch Aronian explaining this game together with Yasser Seirawan in the video below (starting from 05:06:50) which is part of the official commentary that was shown on the tournament website as well as

If you scroll back in this video, you can see the author of this line as well, earlier in the round, going through the opening phase of the six Masters games. (You can see that I am more used to being on the other side of the cam. Laughing)

Wesley So and Hikaru Nakamura were the first to finish; they drew a Triangle Slav where White got the bishop pair but Black got easy piece play. Especially So must have been happy with this game as he's still recovering from his jet lag!

Anish Giri won a nice game against Arkadij Naiditsch, who also lost in the first round. Their Bogo-Indian got quite sharp, and it stayed that way after the queens were traded. At some point Naiditsch lost the thread and his king got stuck in a mating net.

Sergey Karjakin is trying 1.d4 more and more these days, and of course also there he is theoretically very well prepared. On the day that he turned 24, he went for the 5.Bf4 Queen's Gambit Declined and Pentala Harikrishna clearly knew what he was doing too. 18...Kf8 was a deviation from the high-profile blitz game Kasparov-Kramnik, Moscow 2001. White's tiny edge (a better bishop) shouldn't be enough to win at this level (although you can never be sure these days).

The opening phase the game between Leinier Dominguez and Loek van Wely was a bit strange. The Dutchman decided to do something different and played the Sicilian with 2...g6, but White's 6.Na3 shouldn't have been a surprise. However, “KingLoek” spent a long time thinking and then came up with 6...Qa5!? which isn't played often. Then it was the Cuban's turn to take his time, and he offered a queen trade. White still had a lead in development, but perhaps something like 7.Bc4 would have been more dangerous.

It's always nice to see a gambit played at the highest level. Playing the Budapest Gambit, Richard Rapport even managed to beat Boris Gelfand! Between moves 10 and 20, the Israeli lost the thread and the endgame was clearly better for Black. With a number of powerful moves, Rapport increased his advantage further and luckily for him it didn't really matter that he missed a clear win just before the time control.

Tata Steel 2014 | Masters | Round 2 Standings

# Name Rtg 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 Pts SB
1 So,W 2719 ½ 1 1.5/2 1.75
2 Aronian,L 2812 ½ 1 1.5/2 1.50
3 Karjakin,S 2759 ½ 1 1.5/2 1.00
4 Nakamura,H 2789 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.75
5 Giri,A 2734 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.50
6 Harikrishna,P 2706 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.50
7 Dominguez,L 2754 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.00
8 Caruana,F 2782 0 1 1.0/2 0.00
9 Rapport,R 2691 0 1 1.0/2 0.00
10 Van Wely,L 2672 0 ½ 0.5/2
11 Gelfand,B 2777 0 0 0.0/2 0.00
12 Naiditsch,A 2718 0 0 0.0/2 0.00

Also in the Challengers Group there is nobody left with a 100% score. Sadly, there are no best game prizes anymore because otherwise Benjamin Bok would certainly have won it for his game against Yu Yangyi, who is on 0.0/2 now.

A brilliant attack by the young Dutchman

Tata Steel 2014 | Challengers | Round 2 Standings

# Name Rtg 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 Pts SB
1 Jobava,B 2710 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.75
2 Brunello,S 2602 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.75
3 Zhao Xue 2567 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.75
4 Duda,J 2553 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.75
5 Reinderman,D 2593 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.50
6 Bok,B 2560 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.50
7 Saric,Iv 2637 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.25
8 Muzychuk,A 2566 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.25
9 Timman,J 2607 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.00
10 Troff,K 2457 1 1.0/1 0.00
11 Wojtaszek,R 2711 0 0.0/1 0.00
12 Yu Yangyi 2677 0 0 0.0/2 0.00
13 Goudriaan,E 2431 0 0 0.0/2 0.00
14 Van Delft,M 2430 0 0 0.0/2 0.00

The Tata Steel tournament runs 11-26 January and is held in Wijk aan Zee, Amsterdam and Eindhoven. You can find the official website here and the live games here. The live streaming commentary can also be found here on

Leído 12481 veces 24 comentarios
Un Voto


  • hace 3 años


    "White's tiny edge (a better bishop) shouldn't be enough to win at this level (although you can never be sure these days)."

    Haha, a very cheeky reference to Carlsen!


    I really liked Rapport's play; let's hope he can continue playing this way.


    Thanks for the article

  • hace 3 años


    Where is anand and magnus, why they both passed up this big tournament when most top players enduring it. So wha is the reason actually? they forfeited? i am watching it live now til it plays out

  • hace 3 años


    come on now everybody must really see that rich will become WC one day. Also because of good opening surprises. (who told me that the "Booty" is unsound?)

  • hace 3 años


    Boks play was outstanding....

  • hace 3 años


    I like Harikrishna. A talented solid player.

  • hace 3 años


    Rapport was super-aggressive with the black attack and it paid off. No turtle shelling, just punch. Great win!

  • hace 3 años


    GM Duda Who is This Super GM ChessKid?!


  • hace 3 años


    Aronian is going to lose to Dominguez..

  • hace 3 años


    link: So vs. Nakamura.

    I just wish they played it out till the last piece.

    Ok. based on the remarks on the internet. This draw is fine.

  • hace 3 años


    CP Nakamura is +4-7 with a few draws vs Aronian. That isn't a great score but not like it is some Carlsen level of domination. Who knows what will happen in that game. As far as Gelfand I can admit Nakamura struggles with him but Naka must have some confidence after destroying him in their final in the London Chess classical to win the 50 thousand Euros. Sure it was rapid but a win is a win so I can guess that both players respect each other and will give it their all. The matchup I am really interested in for tomorrow is Naiditsch-So

  • hace 3 años


    To early to make any real projections about how the event will turn out. Gelfand and Naiditsch are clearly struggling but tomorrow it could turn around. So far at least we are getting interesting and decisive games. Beats a draw festival in my opinion.

  • hace 3 años


    SB takes the total points of opponents you've beaten, and half the total points of opponent's you've drawn against.

  • hace 3 años


    Link in article: (76th Tata Steel tournament )

    Still not working?

    76th Tata Steel tournament

  • hace 3 años


    go wesley go

  • hace 3 años


    JBades6310 i'm not talking about the score, i am saying, Naka isn't a match for Aronian. he just beat Caruana. Gelfand has a bad start, and if he plays aronian would probably get a draw. who's going to get Aronian then? Wesly so?! that is my point.

  • hace 3 años


    @kebanboy Sonnoram-Berger, it is a tiebreak system.

  • hace 3 años


    CongrAT Wesley So.

  • hace 3 años


    Wesley So has all the talent required to be a top 10 player anytime soon. I hope he continues the rest of the tournament like this, to show that this kid is for real.

  • hace 3 años


    Wesley So is on top of the standings... that's a nice surprise.. Go Wesley!  Keep it up...

  • hace 3 años


    haha I dunno about "in his pocket" - it's only round 2 bud!

Ir arriba

Publique su respuesta: